Linux on Toshiba Satellite 35DVD

TuxMobil - Linux on Laptops, Notebooks, PDAs and Mobile Phones

This document is in the public domain: I waive all copyright.

I got a Toshiba Satellite 35DVD (S35DVD in some catalogues) in April of 2001. I'm quite satisfied with the laptop. It's one of the "ultra-light" ones (some 2kgs), Linux works fine on it and it has all the usually needed ports and a DVD drive. I'm writing this document on the laptop now. :)

I don't have the S35DVD anymore, but I'll leave the page here in case someone needs it. Any additions will be accepted but I'm probably not going to find any more information myself.

I put up this page because when I was getting the laptop, I couldn't find any info on whether Linux works on it. Maybe this page will help someone in search of similar information. If you have any questions or additions or comments, please feel free to e-mail me at jaguar@iki.fi

Mister Johan Almqvist has put up another page about the same laptop at http://www.almqvist.net/johan/s35dvd/. Maurizio Andreotti has another at http://m1x.ath.cx/toshiba35dvd/.

The specs

The specifications are:

Lspci says the following:

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 440BX/ZX - 82443BX/ZX Host bridge (rev 03)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 440BX/ZX - 82443BX/ZX AGP bridge (rev 03)
00:04.0 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI4450 PC card Cardbus Controller
00:04.1 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI4450 PC card Cardbus Controller
00:04.2 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Texas Instruments: Unknown device 8011
00:07.0 Bridge: Intel Corporation 82371AB PIIX4 ISA (rev 02)
00:07.1 IDE interface: Intel Corporation 82371AB PIIX4 IDE (rev 01)
00:07.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82371AB PIIX4 USB (rev 01)
00:07.3 Bridge: Intel Corporation 82371AB PIIX4 ACPI (rev 03)
00:08.0 Multimedia audio controller: Cirrus Logic Crystal CS4281 PCI Audio (rev 01)
00:10.0 Communication controller: Lucent Microelectronics LT WinModem
00:11.0 Ethernet controller: Accton Technology Corporation: Unknown device 1216 (rev 11)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc 3D Rage P/M Mobility AGP 2x (rev 64)
  

Linux installation

Installing Linux on the thing was rather painless. The integrated DVD boots an install cdrom and Linux supports the stuff to get itself installed. I installed Debian GNU/Linux 2.2r2 after resizing the pre-installed Windows ME partition using a proprietary partition utility. I needed to keep the Windows there for two reasons; getting the box to net to do further apt-getting I had to fetch the kernel sources by first downloading them in Windows and then mounting the fat partition from Linux because the LAN chip didn't work with the 2.2.18 kernel from Debian GNU/Linux 2.2.r2. The second reason was I sometimes need to read some Word docs and other stuff Abiword isn't always able to open; however ever since I got Linux running I haven't needed the Windows partition, so I might get rid of it someday.

The EN-2242 network chip

Before I got the laptop I searched the net and found bits and pieces of information that seemed to claim that the network card works with the tulip driver. That didn't work, however, with the 2.2 kernel; the 2.4.3 kernel I'm running now worked fine. The tulip driver seems to think it's running an Admtek chip ("eth0: ADMtek Comet rev 17 at 0x1800"), but I don't care much since it works. Maybe I should report about this to the tulip driver maintainers.

Xfree86

The Ati card works with Xfree86 4.0.3 by using the ati driver. Simple, eh?

To use DVD playback you apparently could get better results by trying out the Gatos project drivers at http://www.linuxvideo.org/gatos/ to get some acceleration out of the Rage Mobility. And of course if at all possible use the latest Xfree86.

Sound

The sound chip works with the in-kernel (2.4 at least, but you'll need that anyway if you want to use the integrated LAN) Crystal Sound CS4281 driver.

The touchpad mouse

The touchpad is ok to use, it's a bit worse than a real ps2 mouse. Gpm works with it ok, just set the responsiveness to 8 and protocol to ps2. I first thought the thing wasn't working before I noticed the responsiveness thing. Use the normal PS/2 driver in the kernel.

Toshiba Linux utilities

I apt-getted the Toshiba linux utilities (toshset, toshutils) and compiled into my kernel the support, but the software doesn't seem to work on this laptop. Maybe the hardware stuff just isn't compatible. This is something I'd really like someone to help me with, since it'd be real nice to be able to control the fan and the backlights and stuff. The software says "this computer is not supported or the kernel module is not installed."

Other stuff

I haven't tried things like the integrated ports. I'm going to try the irda someday to try and get connected to the net using my Nokia 6210 cell phone (can you say 'hacking from the beach'?). DVD is the other thing on my list.

Jarkko Kovala <jarkko.kovala@iki.fi>